MILAN — How do you mark a milestone in 2021 if not with a flurry of collaborations?
The pandemic has certainly scuppered some of the plans for IRL events and parties but the team at the Italian sportswear company known for its street cred didn’t hold back.
There are plenty of achievements to be remembered for a firm that pioneered the garment-dyeing technique in the ’70s and is credited with having defined the notion of Italian sportswear — filled with military and utilitarian references — as we know it today.
Over five decades C.P. Company has attracted international youth subcultures, become recognizable for its “goggle jacket” introduced in 1988 and has most recently entered a new phase of its development strategy under Chinese owner Tristate Holdings Ltd. and with the appointment of Lorenzo Osti, the son of the brand’s founder Massimo, as president in 2019.
Throughout 2021, C.P. Company released almost monthly drops of new cobranded or special merchandise, including a collaboration with streetwear brand Patta; a limited-edition run of statues of a British sailor with crossed arms, the brand’s logo; a windbreaker and boat shoes set in partnership with footwear firm Sebago, also popular in the ’80s, as well as tie-ups with Barbour and Adidas Spezial, among others.
Additionally, the brand issued a book titled “C.P. Company 971–021. An informal history of Italian sportswear” published by Idea and centered on personal anecdotes of 50 personalities linked to the brand.
The 10th and final tie-up with Emporio Armani pays homage to both brands’ ethos and is made up of 20 pieces developed using dedicated fabrics, in nods to Massimo Osti’s textile-driven approach to outerwear, and includes field and bomber jackets, trench coats, as well as goggle hoodies and sweaters with chest pockets, all done in blue and white.
This year also marks Emporio Armani’s 40th anniversary, which designer Giorgio Armani celebrated with a coed spring show at the Armani/Teatro, the exhibition “The Way We Are” at the Armani/Silos and the release of a special issue of the Emporio Armani Magazine.
The capsule debuts on Saturday at the Armani store on Milan’s Via Manzoni and at C.P. Company’s flagship on Corso Matteotti, before an online release planned for Dec. 13 at both brands’ e-shops.
Founded in 1971 by Osti, the brand was originally known as Chester Perry and made a name for itself by releasing screen-printed T-shirts. In the wake of lawsuits filed by Chester Barry and Fred Perry, both claiming Osti had unlawfully used their name and surname, respectively, the brand’s name was changed into C.P. Company in 1978, simultaneously opening the way for a more experimental design approach and focus on outerwear.